greinke_butera_2014-04-23

Dodgers 5, Phillies 2: Zack Greinke Is Unspeakably Great

greinke_butera_2014-04-23

I’m almost completely and totally uncertain of what to say about Zack Greinke any longer. It almost feels like we take him for granted, which is completely unfair of us, because his brilliance is nearly unmatched. And yet here we are, after he just struck out 11 Phillies over seven innings, then doubled, walked, and scored a run at the plate, and the reaction is almost: well, yeah. Of course he did. It’s the 17th time in a row he’s thrown at least five innings and allowed two or fewer runs. He’s now got 40 whiffs and five walks on the season. It almost feels like he’s toying with the opposition.

I guess the highest credit I can give him is this: have you noticed the distinct lack of panic around the fact that Clayton Kershaw, the near-unquestioned best pitcher in baseball, has made zero starts in the Northern Hemisphere this season? Yeah, me too. That’s because of Greinke, and to a slightly lesser extent, Hyun-jin Ryu. Greinke was great tonight. Of course he was. He always is.

Oddly enough, the 5-2 score has little resemblance to the game Greinke pitched in. This was a 2-1 game into the seventh, when Yasiel Puig‘s triple — and more on that in a second — drove in Greinke to make it 3-1. In the eighth, things started to get a little wacky. Greinke came out to make one pitch, seeing his night end when Jayson Nix hit a leadoff homer. J.P. Howell sailed through the rest of the inning, then Hanley Ramirez crushed, and I do mean crushed, a homer off Mario Hollands in the bottom of the frame. That was one of two extra-base hits for Ramirez, and after how awful his last week has been, let’s hope that’s a sign of things to come. Matt Kemp had two doubles himself, and Scott Van Slyke, Puig, and Drew Butera (!) also had two hits apiece.

* * *

Kenley Jansen came in for the ninth, his fourth appearance in five days. The Dodgers have 13 pitchers. 13! If it had been a 6-2 lead, he would’t have come in. But it was 5-2, so it was a “save situation.” It was his 16th appearance, and no one else in baseball has more than 12. If you think that’s not going to come back and bite you at some point….

* * *

Back to Puig, this is the triple. SO BAT FLIP, VERY… not a homer (via Chad):

GIF Link

This is awesome. Everything about it is awesome. The flip, the slide, the hammer swing… love it. Now this, on the other hand…

…maybe not so much. Never, ever boring, though.


About

Mike wrote daily for over six long years (2007-13) about the Dodgers at Mike Scioscia’s Tragic Illness, which was named 2011′s “Best Sports Blog” by LA Weekly. He can currently be found writing multiple times per week at FanGraphs and ESPN, has been a producer and editor for Sports on Earth, and built The Hardball Times. He lives in New York City and will probably be asleep or on vacation when awesome things happen.


219 comments
Dave! (Or Justin Turner, Maybe)
Dave! (Or Justin Turner, Maybe)

Morning everyone... Quick question: WHY IS THE MAIN PICTURE ON THIS ARTICLE GREINKE GRABBING HIS COLLAR BONE?!?! Did FYCQ show up at the game last night?

 tomato
tomato

nice to see puig heat up

baeksu
baeksu

So Matt Kemp didn't have any (to speak of) contact with Puig and comes up wincing and limping.

WTF.  When did he turn into such a wuss?  Don't get me wrong; he's one of my favorites because he grew up near where I live and we've got friends-of-friends and all that stuff.  But geez, I just don't see the 2011 Kemp babying around like that.

KMT59
KMT59

Hopefully are game ends like this

KMT59
KMT59

Ok as @Tired Math Cat said about @DBrim I'm now leaving to the door to be happily on my way to LA to meet new friends

Shroom
Shroom

New post anytime soon?

Shroom
Shroom

@MSTI OG I'm drinking horchata right now and it's all your fault

Purple Drank
Purple Drank

hey braniel. does your company know you are a freelance baseball writer?

DBrim
DBrim moderator

This baby does not care at all about being in an airplane. It's awesome.

Jeremy_N
Jeremy_N

@DodgerBytes  does 'package' assume more than one player? if so, no package is realistic.

DodgerBytes
DodgerBytes

@baeksu  someone is mad Kemp didn't cover his bill at the local TGIF"s during the offseason.

TheConman
TheConman

@baeksu  something hurts, you wince, I dont get why you're calling him a wuss. He hit a double the following inning and ran it out fine, so whats the issue?

efb
efb

@baeksu  running into someone isnt the only way to injure yourself 

DodgerBytes
DodgerBytes

@KMT59  They cancelled fireworks last friday night due to time constraints.

Shroom
Shroom

@KMT59  GET OUT OF HERE. GO MEET NEW FRIENDS AND HAVE FUN DAMMIT.

DBrim
DBrim moderator

Not that I know of.

KMT59
KMT59

@DBrim  my kids were the same way...they actually enjoyed it an as they have gotten older they like it even more..I wonder when they are going to hit my stage where I hate flying because of the being stuck in one place for sooo long

Though the cross country trips aren't bad

Jeremy_N
Jeremy_N

@DBrim  are you speaking in the third person or is there really a baby on the plane with you?

efb
efb

@DBrim  are you going to the game tonight? 

Purple Drank
Purple Drank

@Jeremy_N @DodgerBytes  The Padres consider LA their biggest rival. They're not going to trade LA Hundley without the dodgers drastically overpaying.

Purple Drank
Purple Drank

@efb @Purple Drank  I tried to interview Stan Kasten at Spring Training but apparently nobody had a credential for Drank even though I am a serious journalist.

DBrim
DBrim moderator

There's a baby in the seat next to me.

DBrim
DBrim moderator

Yes.

baeksu
baeksu

@a potato @Purple Drank  @baeksu  Guilty.  He didn't cover my bill last January.  lol

I'm probably reading too much into it.  It just seems like he's really, really far from being anyone that could realistically be labeled Beast Mode.


DBrim
DBrim moderator

There's reasons that we don't need to go into here, hah.

efb
efb

@DBrim  This baby wishes you cared more about interviews

DBrim
DBrim moderator

Not interviewing there either. Taking in that game with my dad, just using the credentials to get better access for photos. I'm not really the interviewing type.

efb
efb

@DBrim  Kersh, Urias, Seager interviews?!

DBrim
DBrim moderator

The credentials are for Sunday in Rancho.

efb
efb

@DBrim  so youre not even gunna flash those credentials? 

DBrim
DBrim moderator

Nope, just going as a fan.

efb
efb

@DBrim  getting some interviews i hope?!